Jennifer Kite-Powell
2 min readJan 8


Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash


I ordered some ribbon on Amazon for a project destined to be a magnificant objet d’art. My intentions were not the best because I knew my track record for magnificent art looked a lot like Charlie Brown’s record for good dates with Lucy. But I fantasized anyway about seeing myself create a masterpiece with wispy avocado-meets-mint-meets sage-colored sheer ribbon.

It was a lush ribbon as far as ribbon goes. It shimmered and shined in a non-Kardashian kind of way, but was also effortlessly outré in a Tilda Swinton kind of way.

I opened the flimsy brown carton containing the artistic savior that might change my life, and the ribbon sprung to life like a slinky on the run. Wiggling and twisting to free itself of captivity from its taut wrap around the bent white cardboard restraining it from its freedom.

It knowingly unfurled itself into my hands. I caught each curly strand of this squirming cotton-poly blend until it abruptly stopped moving.

I looked closer to see to find a Tinkerbell-sized sewing needle hindering its joyful chaos.

The ribbon looked dismayed it couldn’t continue to unfurl itself with abandon. Defeated.

I picked up the spindle, carefully cradling the escaped ribbon. Looked at the slender sewing needle and saw a miniscule red sticker adorning its head that read - DO17.

Was it a secret code from the person who had tightly wound the ribbon around the bent white cardboard spindle? Did they want to feel connected or seen by a stranger they will never know? Is DO17 telling us only you can pull out the pin in your life preventing you from stepping into the stream of your reality.

I stared at DO17 and the pile of curling ribbon in my hand. Blinking at the marvel of DO17 and who had put it there.

I took a deep breath and pulled out DO17. The ribbon came to life again, spilling onto the table, into my lap until it took its last breath patiently waiting to be turned into the magnificant piece of art it was always meant to be.

Thank you, DO17.



Jennifer Kite-Powell

Speculative poet, flash fiction writer, author, podcaster & Forbes senior contributor. Read my work here, on substack or at